I'm back in dog class for 8 weeks, but as an observer only - Clint's handling Zada and I get to watch. We (and by "we" I mean Linda and I) decided that Clint should take her through Level II obedience in order to get some formal training. He's worked with her before, out on walks and in the house, but this way he can start from scratch and have it be taught by Linda herself instead of me...because, having taken riding lessons from my sister when I was young, I know what it's like to have a loved one be your teacher. Doesn't work so well sometimes :)
Anyway - last Tuesday was his first class, and I was looking forward to merely sitting back and watching everyone, but Linda had a different idea. Since there are only 5 participants, that means since I'm coming every time I get to handle Elsa, Linda's 7-month-old Bullmastiff puppy. And, by "puppy" I mean 85 pounds of lion-like animal.
Before that class, I considered myself to be pretty adept at being a "dog trainer" because, well, Zada responds so well with me and I've even worked with Tesa and Hogan, etc...well, I received an eye-opener after having Elsa on the end of the leash. She was good, just VERY hard to work with as she had other interests in mind...namely, wanting to play with her 2 friends in class (Zada and Stanley, a 6-month-old French bulldog, and cuter than cute). She'd be working beautifully for me, but then would lose interest and start staring off at some other dog - which I'd let her do because frankly I was working my butt off and needed a break - when all of a sudden she'd LUNGE at the other dog.
That was fun. She's not mean; just exuberant and, well, HUGE. Finally the class ended, the other members cleared out and we could let the 3 dogs off-leash to have at it and wrestle. Should be interesting to see if Linda asks me to handle her again this coming Tuesday!
But, Clint and Zada did very well together - he was having fun, learned some things, and she was VERY good so I was proud of both of them. (Plus, he still had energy at the end of class because he didn't have a bouncing lion-cub at the end of HIS leash!)
I'm looking forward to the next class, if only just for the fun that's had afterward...I have to admit, both Clint and I think Stanley is probably the cutest thing EVER. His head is a bit large for his body (Clint's definition: "Look at that orange on a toothpick!"), and he's full of himself - just charges right into the thick of the 2 bigger dogs wrestling. I'll have to get a picture of him this next time and put it in here to prove my point.
Well, that's it for now. Nothing else of note to blog about except - of course - my dog.
PS: Read more about Dog Obedience Classes and Linda's method of training :)